Australia to deploy 200 special forces troops in Iraq

Canberra: Australia will send around 200 of its special forces to Iraq to advise and assist Iraqi troops after Foreign Minister Julie Bishop finalised legal frameworks for their deployment Monday.

Bishop said she had settled the legal frameworks during meetings with Iraqi government leaders in Baghdad Saturday and Sunday about a month after the special forces members were sent to the Middle East.

The 200 special forces members, as well as an additional 400 air force personnel, have been in the UAE since September in preparation for Australia's deployment approval.

Now, they will be sent to Iraq, where they will maintain a strictly advisory role alongside Iraqi troops in their fight against Islamic State (IS) militants.

"I received briefings from Iraqi leaders and international coalition partners on the campaign against IS and the current political situation," Bishop said in a statement Monday.

"I emphasised the importance of the Iraqi government's efforts to deliver policies that share power and resources amongst Iraq's various communities."

 

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